I have an old Dunlop mountain bike - I'm not sure whether it's a steel or aluminium frame. (I have had the bike since I received it as a kid probably 20 years ago.)

For some time, I've had it stored on a horizontal wall-mounted hook in my garage. For some reason, the hook mounting came away from the wall, dropping the bike 4 feet onto the concrete floor. The front wheel was not attached, so the forks hit the ground and resulted in the damage and bending of the left-side dropout you see in the photos.

forks front view

different views of fork - collage

What options do I have to rectify this damage? I think the blades are still in alignment, so can I bend the dropout back straight and be safe? Or does it really require replacement of the fork for integrity? As stated, the bike is old and honestly in need of a little TLC, but to date has been perfectly serviceable. However, if this would take any amount of money to repair (in conjunction with other possible servicing), it might be more economical to replace the whole bike outright?

  • 1
    A good engineering shop and heat treatment may save a steel one (I suspect it is steel), at a price - cheaper to get a decent second hand fork. If its aluminum - it is munted.
    – mattnz
    Commented May 11, 2015 at 7:32
  • I'd get a new fork. The front drop-outs are very critical part and subject to high load. Even though it might be steel, bending it back will put stress on the material. It will always be a weak point and liable to break making it potentially unsafe.
    – Carel
    Commented May 11, 2015 at 10:35
  • Assuming it's steel, I'd put it on an anvil and pound it back into shape. Then remove the paint in the area and check very carefully for any cracks, and recheck every few hundred miles. Commented May 11, 2015 at 11:51

1 Answer 1


Get a frame builder to braze in a new dropout. That dropout is finished and dangerous to use, it has bent too far.

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